This one was close enough to consider driving to ~ about nine hours away, but in the end I decided to fly in order to have more time there/less time away from work.
The chance to meet in real life some people who have become friends here in AdoptionLand on the www. I'm most excited about that than anything else, I think!
The chance for more healing.
One reason has come up in the last week or so, long after my decision to attend was made. In the fight for adoptee rights, nothing makes me more mad than to see us moms blamed for the continued discrimination against adult adoptees. (Well, other than the fact that they aren't allowed their obc's in the first place!) I'm glad to be attending the conference just to be present and show that natural moms are not some pathetic beings, cowering in the corner, terrified of her child lost to adoption. I fully support adoptees to have the right to their true facts of birth ~ their original birth certificates as well as any adoption records the adoption agency/lawyer has on file. I also believe all mothers should have the same right to their child lost to adoption's birth certificate just as they do to the other children they gave birth to.
The latest reason I'm excited to attend (yet a little nervous too) is that I have been asked to join Suz Bednarz, Kathy Aderhold and Richard Kish and present on "Mitigating & Managing Collateral Damage: Impact of Adoption on 1st Family"! The reason I'm nervous is first of all ~ public speaking! Secondly this is my first event of anything like this, and I'm kind of scared that the 37+ years of mostly being unable to cry about my adoption loss might be unleashed, leading to a torrent of tears that won't stop. The thirty years of denial and living in the closet before reunion did a great job on making it impossible for me to cry about Christopher. Oh, the tears begin to appear, the lump in the throat grows huge, but the complete (even if illogical) fear of falling into that deep pit of despair, never to find my way out again, will not let me "go there"; therefore stopping any more tears before they become too many tears. Hmmm... well, there is one more thing to add to the list of collateral damage adoption has left on my life!
Will you be at the AAC Conference? I hope I get to meet you ~ in real life!!